WALLEY OF MYSTERIES AND GOOD PISCO
Ica: more than one reason to enjoy it.
Location: Central coast of Peru.
Size: 21,305 km2 (8,226 sq.miles).
Ica boasts characteristic dunes and a vast desert etched with enigmatic figures, the Nasca Lines, transformed into fertile fields by ancient cultures: The Paracas and the Nasca. Land of valleys, sun, beaches and a Natural Reserve inhabited by a lush variety of flora and fauna, it is also a mysterious land of villages, home of fine wine and "pisco", Afro-Peruvian music, and an oasis like the Huacachina, a patch of life in the heart of a blanket of sand.
Visiting Hours : Mon - Sun 7.00 am - 1.00 pm.
Location: Pampas de San José, 25 km from Nazca, level with km 419 on the Panamericana Sur Highway.
An enormous network of lines and drawings of animals and plants, attributed to the Nazca culture, covering an area of approximately 350 km2. Some of the best drawings depict humming birds, dogs, monkeys and "chaucato", long-tailed mockingbirds. The German María Reiche dedicated 50 years to studying and researching the site and reached the conclusion that it was an astronomical calendar. From a 12-metre high viewpoint, the figures of the hand and the tree can be partially seen. However, to fully appreciate the drawings, the area must be flown over in a light aircraft. The Nazca Lines were declared a World Heritage Site in 1994.
Visiting Hours : Daytime.
Location : 5 km south-west of Ica (10 minutes).
Traditional relaxation spot for Ica residents. An oasis in the middle of the desert, with a splendid landscape of palm trees, "huarangos" (acacias) and dunes, where you can go sandboarding. Its waters are said to have curative properties.